Washington: The US and Iran said on Tuesday they were not seeking war with each other as tensions simmered between the two in the Persian Gulf and US President Donald Trump vowed the US would respond to any attack.
“We have a lot of things going with Iran,” Trump told reporters as he left the White House for a campaign in Florida. “We’ll see what happens. Let me just say this: We are very prepared.”
Trump’s comments came just hours after he announced the sudden departure of acting Pentagon chief Patrick Shanahan, jolting the Defence Department only a day after he signed off on sending an additional 1,000 troops to the Middle East to counter Iran.
On a visit Tuesday to US Central Command in Florida, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he was confident the US is taking the necessary steps to confront any challenge from Iran.
He said the military is ready to respond to any attack by Iran on US interests or Iranian disruption of global shipping lanes through which much of the world’s oil supplies flow.